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Windows 7 End of Life: What options do you have

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Windows 7 End of Life: What options do you haveAs Microsoft stops supporting Windows 7 from January 2020, what choices do you have as a Windows 7 user? While Windows 7 will work after January 2020– it won’t just “shut down”–as a business, you cannot afford to use the older version because it makes you vulnerable to security threats. That leaves you with only 2 options.

Option 1: Purchase extended support

Microsoft is offering the option to purchase extended support for Windows 7 until 2023. Though the exact price of the extended support option is not known, it is estimated to be around $350 per device for 3 years.

But, one thing for you to think about before investing in extended support for your existing Windows 7 devices is that after 3 years you will have to migrate to a newer OS no matter what. In the meantime, your newer software programs or apps may not be compatible with Windows 7.

Option 2: Ring out the old and bring in the new--UPGRADE!

If you choose not to opt for Windows 7 exte…

Windows 7 End of Life: How does it impact you

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Windows 7 End of Life: How does it impact youMicrosoft has officially announced the “End of Life” date for Windows 7. It will come January 14, 2020. Windows 7 was introduced in 2009 and is one of the most popular versions of Windows. It is estimated that around 40% of Windows OS is 7. So, if you are one of the Windows 7 users, read this blog to understand how this end of life announcement impacts you and what you should be doing.

End of life means, beyond January 2020, users of Windows 7 will not get any updates, security patches, or any kind of support from Microsoft. Does this mean you need to scrap all your devices that run on the Windows 7 OS? Technically, the answer is no.You can still continue to use your existing computer with Windows 7 OS, but it won’t get the free security patches and updates. This makes your computer and possibly your whole IT network vulnerable to malware and other IT security threats. Plus, as a business, running Windows 7 OS without the security patches an…

Ransomware emails: How to identify

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Ransomware emails: How to identify and steer clear of themRansomware attacks have suddenly become more prevalent. Each year sees more of them. Hospitals, NPOs, shipping giants, etc., have all been victims of ransomware attacks. Your business could be too! Did you know that emails are one of the most common gateways for ransomware to get into your systems? In this blog, we tell you how you can stay safe by following a few tips.If you think something is amiss, it probably isDoes that email seem unfamiliar? As though you weren’t meant to get it, or it doesn’t quite sound like your colleague wrote it? Perhaps it’s not. Malicious email senders often try to mask actual email IDs with something similar. For example: An email you believe to have come from billing@yourvendor.com might actually be from billing@yourvemdor.com. So take a good look at the email ID if you spot something ‘phishy’.Attachments and form fillsDoes the email contain an attachment that you are being asked to save to your …

How good is your password

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How good is your password?Did you know that having a weak password is one of the biggest security risks you face? This blog focuses on the best practices related to passwords that you can follow to ensure passwords are not your weakest link.

Avoid sequences and repetitions: How many times have you used passwords like dollar12345 or $$$BobMckinley. Passwords containing sequences and repetitions are just easier to hack.Avoid using your personal data: Do not make your birth date, bank account number or address a part of your password. It puts your data at stake if your personal information is stolen.Don’t repeat passwords: Make sure you pick unique passwords every time. Unique, not only verbatim, but also in combination. For example, if password one is a combination of number, symbols and letters in that sequence, password two should be letters, numbers and symbols.Manual password management is not a good idea: Invest in a good password management tool. You can even find some free ones on…

Think you are too small

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Think you are too small to be targeted by a cybercriminal? Think again.When I meet with clients, especially SMBs, I often hear them say that they feel their business is too insignificant to be a target of cyber-criminals. Why would someone go after my business when there are bigger ones out there, making more money? Here are a few reasons why.

Because you think so - The fact that you think you are safe makes you more vulnerable, because you are not prepared for the eventualities that arise from an attack. Most SMBs I interact with don’t have a well-defined plan in place in terms of IT securityYour staff is a gateway: Smaller businesses rarely conduct formal training sessions or provide information updates to their staff about the latest cyber threats. Such sessions are never a priority when the staff is too caught up with other ‘real’ work. As a result, your staff is more likely to fall for phishing messages and unknowingly become a gateway for cybercriminals to enter your organization…

Keeping your data safe: Access Control

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Keeping your data safe: Access ControlCyberattacks are a commonplace today. Malwares such as viruses, worms and more recently ransomwares not only corrupt your data or hold it hostage, but also inflict irreversible damage on your brand and business. As a norm, most businesses these days do invest in anti-virus/cybersecurity systems. But, is that really enough? The answer is--NO. Because, they often overlook one important aspect--access. Ask yourself, how easy is your data to access? How can you strengthen the walls that keep your data safe? Read this blog to find out.Role-based accessAlways follow a role-based access permission model--meaning people in your organization have access to ONLY the data they REALLY need. Generally, the higher the designation, the deeper the data access permission and stronger the rights. For example, someone at the executive level may not be able to edit your MIS spreadsheet, but a manager should be able to.Formal password controlsNo matter how good your c…

Website cloning: Don’t fall for that trap!

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Website cloning: Don’t fall for that trap!Have you watched one of those horror movies where the something impersonates the protagonist only to wreak havoc later? Well, website cloning does the same thing--to your business--in real life. Website cloning is one of the most popular methods among scammers to fleece you of your money.

As the name suggests, the cybercriminal first creates a ‘clone’ site of the original one. There can be a clone of any website, though retail shopping sites, travel booking sites and banks are the favorites of cybercriminals. The clone site looks exactly like the original one, barring a very miniscule change in the url.

Next, they will create a trap intended to get unsuspecting victims to visit the clone site. This is usually done via links shared through emails, SMS messages or social media posts asking them to click on a link to the clone site. The message urges the recipient to take an action. For example, a message that presents itself as though it is from t…